tv BBC World News PBS May 25, 2011 5:00am-5:30am EDT
>> union bank has put its financial strength to work for a wide range of companies, from small businesses to major corporations. what can we do for you? >> and now, "bbc world news." >> president obama arrives at 10 downing street to hold talks with the british prime minister on the second day of his state visit. the volcanic ash cloud sweeps eastward. 700 flights are to be cancelled over germany. violent storms hit oklahoma and kansas in america's midwest. at least seven people have been killed. welcome to "bbc world news." i'm tim will docks. also coming up -- abandoned villages and children contaminated by arsenic. we look at the legacy of soviet industry in georgia. and the japanese garden at london's chelsea flower show blooms against all the odds.
>> hello and welcome. the u.s. president, barack obama, has just arrived at 10 downing street for in-depth talks with the british prime minister, david cameron. let's show you the pictures of that arrival. he pulled up in cadillac one, otherwise known as the beast, that heavily armored car. for the political side of this state visit, last night was a state dinner at buckingham palace, where he made the speech, as indeed, did the queen, talking about the special, essential relationship that existed between britain and the united states. now the president and prime minister will be going in for talks with the deputy prime minister, nick clegg, and also hillary clinton, u.s. secretary of state, and george osborne, the treasury minister, finance minister here as well. let's get the latest on all the developments so far.
>> this is how to dazzle your dinner guests. for the 12th american president , the queen hosted a lavish banquet. >> ladies and gentlemen, we are here to celebrate the tried, tested, and yet special relationship between our two countries. >> it is a great honor to join you again in this great country, as we reaffirm the enduring bonds between our two nations and reinforce this special relationship. >> as well as the ceremony of yesterday, david cameron and barack obama dropped into this south london school for a game of table tennis. today, the two leaders will knuckle down to talks. >> the relationship is much more balanced. david cameron has a year under his belt of demonstrating a certain autonomy of u.s. foreign policy, deciding on no-fly zone for libya, etc.
and so, in a way, they're both much more comfortable in their skins in terms of their relationship. it's much more balanced. >> on the eve of this trip, the president and prime minister said their countries have an essential relationship, one based on common interests and shared values. less sentimental, more businesslike. and there are big issues for them to discuss, such as afghanistan and the time table for pulling out troops and the possibility of talks with the taliban. libya, colonel gaddafi is still in power despite nato's actions. and the recent arab uprisings will surely feature in their talks. the motorcade will return to parliament this afternoon, where he sets out his foreign policy vision to m.p.'s and peers. >> let's go straight back to downing street to our other correspondent, naomi grimley. the president has arrived. who's gone in with him? >> well, we're expecting hillary clinton and william haig -- william hague, the
foreign secretary, to walk through the front door in a few moments. they will be joining a later chat about foreign affairs. the president is also going to drop in on the national security council. that's the body that britain set up rather to echo the one that exists in the west wing in the white house. so they'll have that chat later on. we're expecting a press conference and, of course, the big piece of the day, which is when president obama addresses both houses of parliament, an honor which has never actually been extended to an american president before. >> and there are subtle, nuanced differences, aren't there, vis-a-vis afghanistan, libya, and indeed, the israeli peace process? >> that's right, they are. i mean, for example, on libya, there's been a lot of criticism of the american administration in the british parliament, worries that they were just too much at the back at the beginning, too let cent will taking action.
on afghanistan, there are worries on the american side that david cameron may be too keen to get his troops out of afghanistan, particularly now that osama bin laden has been killed. and on the subject of the middle east peace process, there's a big dilemma for britain coming up,. when the palestinians make their bid for statehood in september, americans have already signal that had they're going to oppose that. that leaves david cameron in a bit of a dilemma about what to do. >> and also, ahead of that address to both houses of parliament, naomi, there's going to be a barbecue there today, isn't there, hosted by the first lady and mrs. cameron. >> that's right. believe it or not, i can actually smell barbecue already, so they're obvioused testing the equipment. >> what are they cooking? >> we don't know. i expect it will be burgers and hotdogs. there was some suggestion that the burgers would come from david cameron's oxfordshire constituency, so there would be a link to his home turf there.
that is actually being hosted in honor of military personnel who serve in afghanistan and iraq, because the two countries are trying to cooperate a bit more on how to actually look after veterans when they come home, whether it's mental healthcare or physical care, an acknowledgment that perhaps in the past those countries haven't done that so well. >> thank you very much, naomi grimley, on day two of the state visit. now, the iceland ash cloud is spreading eastward. now germany has been forced to close airports in the north of the country and two berlin airports. 700 fleets are expected to be cancelled there. reuters is also quoting a weather official as saying the volcano has now stopped erupting. flights through british airspace are expected to resume. however, there are fears the cloud could cause more disruptions at the end of the week. >> british airports are expected to operate as normal after a day of disruptions for
passengers. the ash cloud grounded flights in scotland and northern england. compared to the travel problems last time, though, it appears that we got off lightly. across europe, around 500 flights were cancelled, so there's likely to be some delay today due to the knock-on effect. this is how the cloud of volcanic ash is predicted to leave u.k. airspace. the red band, the most dense and dangerous, drifts away from us toward europe. germany says that some airports, including bremen and hamburg, will be closed on wednesday. other german cities and neighboring countries could also be affected. the ash cloud leaves behind a row between ryanair and regulators. the irish airline criticized the cancellations as overcautious. it's calling for more changes. >> they're in areas where
volcanic ash is somewhere where we can fly around, and we continue to examine the engines on landing. >> the eruptions of the iceland volcano are dying down, but the weather pattern means we may not have seen the last of the ash cloud. with the bank holiday weekend and school half term fast approaching, there are fears that it could return and ruin the plans of many for a great getaway. >> british airways has taken a test flight into the skies above the u.k. the chief executive of the international airlines group, the parent company of british airways. >> prepared the aircraft before flights, removed filters, so we knew the filters were absolutely clean, took photographs of all the surfaces of the aircraft, checked the engines, and then operated the aircraft through the predicted volcanic ash clouds and then tested the aircraft after it landed. the initial results show that there's no evidence of any ash or any damage to any part of
the aircraft. we will send off the data for scientific evaluation and testing, and also the flight data recorder will be assessed to see if that shows anything during the flight. >> willie walsh there. let's catch up with the latest business. christine lagarde showing a press conference. is she throwing her hat into the ring? >> seems very likely this is what the press conference is going to be about. she's finally heard that she has the backing from the e.u., so they are supporting her in that position. >> back at the e.u.? what about the brits? >> no, no, not the brics countries. a letter was written by the five directors of the bric nations, who are on board the i.m.f., saying that we have to stop this mindset that, you know, a leader for the i.m.f. has to be european. that was established in 1944. they want that changed. they've also got a lot more power nowadays. >> how much more power do they have? >> in terms of voting, no, the
europeans, the united states still hold the main rights of the voting. but you got to consider that, for example, china, during 2008, during the financial crisis, effectively tripled the lending power of the i.m.f. china poured billions of dollars into this organization or institution, so one would imagine, if the bric nations as a collective group gain support, then they may have, you know, quite a large say. but anyway, 9:45 g.m.t. from out of paris is this announcement, hopefully. >> briefly, japanese export figures? >> tim, they have fallen off a cliff, and perhaps no surprises. but we knew we were going to see something like this, but 12.5% they are down for the month of april. that's compared to year on year basically, but also exports, they are down some 76%. so really taking a big hit. toyota, for example, has announced it's probably going to lose about a million vehicles in terms of production
. but look, we'll have more on the world business report coming up in about 50 minutes' time. >> thank you very much. at least seven people reportedly killed after more tornadoes in the american midwest. authorities say a series of tornadoes hit oklahoma state capital. the new storms come as rescue workers search for hundreds of people still missing in the town of joplin in missouri, about 320 kilometers to the northeast. >> it is a terrifying site. a tornado roaring its way across the oklahoma countryside. nature at its most powerful and deadly. nothing can withstand this brutal force. it's tornado season in america. dozens of storms have ripped through the heart of the country in recent weeks, making this one of the worst years on record. joplin, missouri, took a direct hit. this is the aftermath of the deadliest single tornado in decades. amazingly, days afterwards, they're still pulling people alive from the wreckage. but others didn't make it.
at least 120 people were killed . the number of dead is expected to rise. but these are resilient people, a clean-up operation is already underway. it's likely to cost millions, if not billions of dollars. a frightening reminder that even one of the world's most developed economies is powerless before the humbling force of nature. daniel griffiths, bbc news. >> now sport news. let's start with rafa nadal. he had a struggle, didn't he? >> often champions do have struggles in the first round. he was playing a very big player, 6'10" john isner of the united states. it went to five sets, and nadal, don't forget, is imperious on clay. he was brought up playing on clay. he's won five out of the last six french opens. >> looks delighted to win this one. >> i think he relieved, because he was saying afterwards, he's not really on his game at the moment. that's his uncle tony in the shot there, who is his coach, and i think there was relief from his uncle that he got
through that game. no champion has been knocked out of the first round of the men's singles at the french open, so that was a big relief. but i mean, he's a tough guy. he knows, though, apart from federer, who he normally has the better of on clay, there's also djokovic, who's playing superbly. so he's got to watch his game. >> football, barcelona-manchester united, who's going to win? >> well, i say manchester united. barcelona, they're coming to london because the game is in london on saturday, two days early because of worries over volcanic ash. they're training at the arsenal ground in north london. they are a great team, but we saw the opinion of someone who watches a lot of both teams, who works alongside us at the bbc here. of course, he played for barcelona as well a few years ago, and he thinks that the power lies with them. >> i think it's going to be difficult. if they play 10 times, united might win two or two of them and barca would win the rest.
the fact it's in london, they'll probably get the huge majority of the support, and it's 90 minutes, not two legs, gives them a better chance than they otherwise would have. for me, barcelona. >> yeah. the former barcelona striker favors barcelona. >> thanks very much. you're watching "bbc world news." still to come -- grounded by volcanic ash, we'll have the latest on the travel problems facing german airports. >> fighting has resumed in the yemeni capital between security forces and the country's biggest tribe, which has joined the youp rising. according to reports, they've occupied several government ministries. authorities say at least 38 people have been killed since monday. >> fierce gunfire has rattled through the streets of the yemeni capital for the last 48 hours. the tribal fighters determined to force the president to step
down. he's determined not to. the president has been under pressure to resign for months. mass protests of anti-government demonstrators have been held nationwide, calling for him to leave office immediately. but they've had little influence on the yemeni leader, who's been in power for 13 years. on sunday, the president was supposed to sign a deal that would give him immunity from prosecution in exchange for his resignation, but once again, the president refused to sign it. the government has accused the sheik, the head of yemen's most powerful tribe, of igniting the clashes, and government troops reportedly tried to storm his home. on tuesday, he joined the uprising against the president, adding his powerful weight to the anti-government stand. armed militiamen have been walking the streets of the capital day and night, and the tribesmen do appear to be tightening their grip on the center of the city. they sealed off key government buildings, but are being
constantly bombarded with mortars and gunfire. the president's troops are still in control in the south of the city, where the presidential palace and military camp is located. but there are fears that the violence may escalate even further. scores of men from both sides have been wounded and are being treated in hospital for their injuries. many others didn't make it. >> you're watching "bbc world news" with me, tim kill box. the headlines this hour -- president obama has arrived at downing street to hold talks with the british prime minister on the second day of his state visit. and germany has grounded or cancelled 700 flights because of ash from an erupted volcano in iceland. let's get the latest from germany. let's go to berlin to our correspondent, steve evans. how many flights, steve? >> 700, as you say, tim.
that's one in 10 basically. this cloud is skirlting the northern coast of germany, so bretten, hamburg, and the two airports in berlin have closed, and a few smaller airports. there is a bit of a knock-on with other airports canceling flights to those, and some suggestion from the authorities that poland may be affected. so it's nowhere near as bad, but still a serious event. >> how long is it going to last? have they said? >> nobody knows. it depends on the vagueries of an angry volcano notice iceland, but the indication from there is no more eruptions seem to be happening, and that's from the icelandic prime minister. the authorities, the airport authorities say there may be a return to normal. this is across europe by thursday. that is dependent on no more activity from that volcano.
that's the way way it looks at the moment. the weather is favorable for the stuff to disperse, and it seems that the winds are blowing in a way from the major airlines, from the major lanes, rather. that's the way it looks at the moment. but we are in the hands of the vagueries of the weather, the winds, and also of the volcano. >> just briefly, steve, how much of a debate is there about whether the government and the authorities are overreacting to this? >> in german, pretty well no debate. i mean, certainly no debate along the lines of the ryanair boss yesterday, who is pointing a finger at bureaucrats not knowing their business basically and saying that his planes have flown and there was no sign of the stuff. no debated like that. there are murmurrings in private as it were, nobody in public, but there are murmurrings that the whole system of regulation across europe seems to be not quite as
it should be. in other words, the ash cloud knows no boundaries, but regulators do. >> steve evans, thank you very much. amnesty international says both sides in the ivory coast committed war crimes and crimes against humanity. the report by the group records ed of massacres, rapes, and manhunts between the disputed presidential election in november and the arrest last month of the former president, bag bag. some of the pictures in this report you may find disturbing. >> there's detailed testimony about massacres of civilians carried out by forces loyal to the elected president,, and the red cross says people were killed because they belong to the wrong ethnic group. the group is said to support gbagbo while he was still trying to cling to office. the president says the guilty
will be brought to trial. >> we have asked the u.n., human right commission to come and make an investigation. under that business, we'll make the decisions. if they say that specific persons have committed crime, they will be judged. >> but some of the killings in western ivory coast were carried out by the very men who ultimately brought ouattara to power when he was denied his victory at the polls. he was finally inaugurated president this month, and he's a banker by profession, not a warlord. he may need the armed men who helped him get this far, and sending some of them for trial could alienate others. while gbagbo was still hanging on to office, his troops were opening fire. here, women marched against him in the streets and paid the price. the former president, seen here
shortly after his arrest, is going to pay now. he faces a domestic trial for alleged corruption and another at the international criminal court for alleged war crimes. the fighting on the front lines was dramatic, but amnesty international says it was civilians, not soldiers, who boar the brunt of the violence. it calls for an end to impunity on all sides. mark doyle, bbc news. >> almost 20 years since the collapse of the soviet union, but the legacy of its industry still lives on in georgia. thousands of people are still affected by the pollution from old soviet factories. >> they call this the black valley. in the foothills of the mountains, once thousands lived and worked here. only a few hundred now remain. the industries that in soviet times brought wealth collapsed, leaving behind the skeletons of
factories and the ghosts of toxic waste. an engineer who helped run the place for more than 40 years took me to the ruins of the furnaces, where they used to burn the oil. the levels of arsenic in the soil here are 20 to 30 times higher than is safe. he showed me letters he's written to the government demanding action. >> what has the government done to clean up this place? >> nothing at all, he says. >> and there is a human cost. cancer rates in adults are higher than normal, but no one really knows the long-term effects. the parents of the children here say that they're healthy and well, but i have this report from the state medical university, which states categorically that the blood of the children is contaminated with arsenic and they're six times more likely to suffer from serious chest infections than other children.
it seems no one has told the villages about the study or even the local pediatricians. she says the children may seem unaffected by the arsenic now, but that may not last. >> it will definitely appear in the future, but it's difficult to find out what it's like, because they try to go to cities, so following them to check their health is impossible. >> the government seems powerless to do anything about it. the scale of the problem immense. >> not only there, but all over the country we have the legacy of pestsides, land mines, abandoned factories, sources of radiation. of day we get information about something. we just don't have the resources to sort all these out. >> for now, the people of the
black valley have little choice but to cling to older certainties and pray for a better future. angus crawford, bbc news, in georgia. >> some of the world's greatest garden designers have been gathering in london for the annual chelsea flower show. they work all year round, go to extraordinary lengths to produce some of the most amazing gardens and displays of colorful flowers and plants. none more so than the japanese garden, kazuyuki. in the aftermath of the earthquake and tsunami, he's nodding put on a show called "a beautiful paradise" against all the odds. >> it's called, fittingly, a beautiful paradise. and for its designer, it encapsulates the tranquility of a traditional japanese garden. the devastation and death after the earthquake and tsunami compounded when some of his own design team suffered personal loss and were unable to
continue their work. for a moment, he thought he shouldn't go ahead with his plans to bring the garden to this year's chelsea flower show, but then a change of heart. >> we lost so many beautiful far dense, but we will bring back the beautiful views of trees that we once had. i am determined to rebuild japan as a gardener. >> it calls itself the greatest flower show on earth. the annual chelsea flower show is intended to exhibit the brightest and the best for thousands of enthusiastic visitors from around the world. but it's the natural beauty and melancholy of the japanese garden that has taken center stage. >> the tranquility of a garden like this here in the heart of london is intended to show not just the artistic flair of japanese gardens, but also a
symbol that, after the devastation of a tsunami, creativity can be allowed to deprow. russell trott, bbc news, at the chelsea flower show. >> you're watching "bbc world news." >> hello and welcome. >> see the news unfold, get the top stories from around the globe and click-to-play video reports. go to bbc.com/news to experience the in-depth, expert reporting of "bbc world news" online. >> funding was made possible by the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu. newman's own foundation. the john d. and catherine t. macarthur foundation. and union bank.